Given his performance on the field over the last few years, Aaron Hernandez was a fairly popular player. As such, plenty of fans of all ages bought New England Patriots jerseys with “Hernandez 81” emblazoned on the back. Now that he has been arrested and charged with murder, his alleged off the field actions have likely caused a number of people with those jerseys to question what to do with them.
Enter the Patriots Pro Shop with the answer to their dilemma. Rather than throw them out or burn them in effigy, fans can bring them to the Patriots Pro Shop at Patriot Place, right next to Gillette Stadium on July 6-7 and exchange them for another jersey. New England Patriots spokesperson Stacey James had this to say regarding the exchange:
“We know that children love wearing their Patriots jerseys, but may not understand why parents don’t want them wearing their Hernandez jerseys anymore. We hope this opportunity to exchange those jerseys at the Patriots Pro Shop for another player’s jersey will be well received by parents.”
As with any program of this nature, there are a few rules that need to be followed:
Only #81 Hernandez jerseys purchased from the New England Patriots Pro Shop or its official website can be exchanged.
Only officially licensed NFL merchandise and are from Nike or Reebok.
You can only exchange it for an in-stock jersey of similar value, you can’t get a better quality (authentic in place of replica) jersey or a custom order.
Jerseys are eligible for exchange only on Saturday, July 6 and Sunday, July 7 during store hours at the New England Patriots Pro Shop in Foxborough, MA. Store hours on Saturday are 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. Sunday hours are from 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
And finally, the Patriots Pro Shop does reserve the right to make all decisions regarding the eligibility of your exchange item. All decisions are final, so if they have any reason to feel that the jersey you are trying to exchange came from anyplace other than the Pro Shop, they can refuse to honor the exchange.
So there you have it. If you’re the owner of a #81 Hernandez jersey that you no longer want, then you can now do something about it. If you want the jersey of a team leader, then go with a #12 Tom Brady jersey. If you want a star tight end, there’s always a #83 Rob Gronkowski jersey. And if you want someone you can almost guarantee you’ll never go through an off the field incident like the one with Hernandez, then you could always take a #5 Tim Tebow jersey.